David Axelrod (born in Los Angeles in 1936)
came to prominence in the early 1960s as a jazz and rock producer,
but his most lasting legacy is likely to be his pioneering work integrating
funk breakbeats, orchestral arrangements and psychedelic melodies, thereby
foreshadowing dance music of the late 1990s.
In 1966-67 he began his association with jazz greats
Cannonball Adderley and Lou Rawls, and he will remain their trusted producer
for a decade.
In 1967 he virtually redefined the sound of the
Electric Prunes, whose albums are basically his
rather than theirs.
His first two solo albums,
Song of Innocence (Capitol, 1968), released four months before
VanDyke Parks' Song Cycle, and
Songs of Experience (Capitol, 1969), both
based on William Blake poems, sounded wildly eccentric because they were
arranged for bass, drums and strings (Earl Palmer on drums). Their dark,
depressed ambience predates trip-hop.
Song of Innocence tracks:
Song Of Innocence,
The Mental Traveler.
Song of Experience tracks:
The Poison Tree,
A Little Girl Lost,
The Sick Rose,
The School Boy,
The Human Abstract,
A Divine Image.
They were followed by another ambitious album,
Earth Rot (Capitol, 1970),
one of the first environmentalist albums (a suite in eight movements),
Rock Messiah (RCA, 1971), a rock interpretation of Handel's masterpiece,
Axelrod's ultimate post-Electric Prunes dream.
The Auction (Decca, 1972), a soundtrack that was virtually a tribute
to blues music (and contains The Auction and The Leading Citizen).
Axelrod found his mature voice on
Heavy Axe (february 1974 - Fantasy, 1974),
highlighted by the ghostly groove of
Mucho Chupar and Everything Counts (a remake of
Holy Thursday), although hampered by a few rock covers.
Then came the trilogy of albums each containing six long songs:
Seriously Deep (Polydor, 1975), another stand-out in terms of
sophistication and beats (1000 Rads alone is worth the price,
plus Miles Away,
Go For It,
Strange Ladies (MCA, 1977),
with Aunt Charlotte,
and Marchin' (MCA, 1980),
Threnody for a Brother.
These rank among his best and most funk-jazz works.
After a long hiatus, Axelrod returned to solo recording with the ambitious
Requiem: The Holocaust (Liberty, 1993), in four movements,
and The Big Country (Liberty, 1995), an odd tribute to country music.
An Axelrod Anthology (Stateside, 1999) is an anthology.
In the 1990s Axelrod's breakbeats were re-discovered by several disc-jockeys
(e.g., DJ Shadow),
who began sampling his grooves.
David Axelrod (Mo' Wax, 2001) builds songs out of rhythm tracks that
Axelrod had recorded in 1968 for an unreleased Electric Prunes album.
majestic, richly textured orchestral tapestries,
tastefully arranged by veterans of rock, soul and jazz
(The Little Children, Crystal Ball,
The Shadow Knows,
Fantasy for Ralph, For Land's Sake, Loved Boy).
The Edge (Blue Note, 2005) collects material from his classic
albums of 1966-70.
(Translation by/ Tradotto da xxx) |
Se sei interessato a tradurre questo testo, contattami